The mega-merger between Canadian mining leviathan Potash and Israel Chemicals Ltd. will sit on the shelf until after the general elections
Deputy Attorney General Avi Licht said in a letter of opinion to the ministries involved in the deal.
It should be mentioned that the letter does not explicitly ban the deal; however, proceedings between Licht and the ministries makes it absolutely clear that the deal will not be signed ahead of the elections.
Licht was requested by the Prime Minister's Office, Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor to examine whether the deal could be completed in light of the government's golden share in ICL.
In the letter of opinion, Lich said that at the moment there are no grounds for an urgent completion of the deal and it should be shelved until the establishment of a new government.
Lich added that such a merger was a complex matter that entailed approvals and procedures both in Israel and abroad, and that so far preliminary talks were held between the parties which have not officially applied for approval to date.
A meeting between government representatives and Potash is expected in early December.
Licht evaluated the deal's current situation and was under the impression that the parties involved did not expect to conclude administrative procedures before the elections.
"If, unexpectedly, talks do come to fruition, then due to the complexity of the matter and its sensitivity, as well as the fact that at this point no grounds for the deal's urgency have been presented, the deal shall not be concluded until a new government is formed and it that government shall not be restricted.
"This is in keeping with the principles of restraint set in the attorney general's directives and the ruling of the Supreme Court," Licht clarified.
He noted, however, that in the event that the proceedings were completed prior to the elections and other parties advocated the completion of the deal during the election period, then in keeping with the attorney general's directives and the Supreme Court's ruling, the parties may resubmit a detailed request.
This report was originally published in Hebrew